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Defending Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka will make her highly anticipated return to the court next month at a warm-up tournament for the season-opening Grand Slam in Melbourne, organizers said Friday.

The WTA lead-in event will start on Jan. 4 at Melbourne Park before the Australian Open kicks off at the same venue from Jan. 17.

Osaka, who also won the Australian Open in 2019, resumed training last month, ending a self-imposed break from tennis.

After making headlines for skipping a scheduled press conference at the French Open in May, Osaka revealed her struggle with depression and later withdrew from Wimbledon.

The four-time Grand Slam champion represented Japan at the Tokyo Games — where she lit the Olympic cauldron at the opening ceremony in late July — losing in a third-round upset.

She was eliminated in the third round of the U.S. Open in September, and then announced she was taking an indefinite break from competition.

U.S. Open champion Emma Raducanu will also compete in Melbourne, with the British teenager using event to get used to the conditions in Australia in her first visit to Melbourne Park.

World No. 1 Ash Barty will kick off her 2022 season at the Adelaide International Australian Open warm-up in the first week of January.

The Wimbledon champion, who won the tournament in its inaugural year in 2020, last played competitively at the U.S. Open in early September before returning home to Australia.

Barty, who was named WTA Player of the Year this week after winning five titles in 2021, will be joined at Memorial Drive by defending champion Iga Swiatek and former world No. 1 players Garbine Muguruza and Karolina Pliskova.

Kei Nishikori will compete in the men’s warm-up tournament in Melbourne.

Rafa Nadal, who has decided not to take part in the ATP Cup in Sydney in the first week of the year, headlines the ATP 250 tournament in Melbourne from Jan. 4 to 9, while Gael Monfils will be the big draw in the men’s tournament in Adelaide.

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic was listed as part of the Serbian team for the ATP Cup, but his involvement in the Australian tennis season remains uncertain because of the vaccination requirements.

Roger Federer, who shares the record of 20 Grand Slam titles with Djokovic and Nadal, has already confirmed he will not be traveling to Australia as he recovers from knee surgeries.

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